Hour 10: Lehto Continues

Champion Racing is sitting pretty at the end of the 10th hour of the 73rd Le Mans 24 Hours, with its pair of Audi R8s running first and second at 02:00, JJ Lehto a lap ahead of Emanuele Pirro

This has left the way clear for the Jim Gainer International Dome to extend its advantage in third place, with Katsumoto Kaneishi still at the wheel. However, the car on the move is the Pescarolo Sport of Jean-Christophe Boullion which is a lap down in fourth place and closing.

Since midnight, Franck Montagny and Audi Playstation Team ORECA have been the biggest losers, having spent more than 17 minutes in their pit for a second batch of replacement work on their front suspension and dropping two laps behind the Pescarolo.

The Racing for Holland Dome was also delayed, first with John Bosch limping back to the pits with a puncture and then in a subsequent pit stop for a radiator to be replaced. Team boss and lead driver Jan Lammers outlined the problems that have dropped the car from sixth to 14th: "We picked up some debris which led to the puncture. But this also damaged a radiator and the guys have done a tremendous job to get John back out there. Now, we'll simply have to pick up the pace again and see where that will leave us later today."

Showing an excellent turn of speed and remarkable reliability, the Aston Martin that is leading GT1 is up to sixth overall, nine laps up on the best of the LMP2 cars. Pedro Lamy is at the wheel and has just set his car's fastest lap. The sister DBR9 has lapped faster, but is three laps adrift after enduring three stop-and-go penalties, all coming when Darren Turner was at the wheel. These equate to a loss of more than six and a half minutes.

Jan Magnussen is chasing after Lamy's Aston Martin with his Corvette C6.R placed seventh, almost precisely a minute ahead of the sister C6.R of Max Papis.

Sandwiched between them is a car that has received little mention, the Team Jota Zytek. Sam Hignett is at the wheel, circulating in eighth place overall.

Delayed badly early in the race when it needed a water pump changed, the Creation Autosportif DBA4 has made it back to the top ten with Nicolas Minassian chasing after Papis's Corvette.

In LMP2, it's Paul Belmondo Racing first and second as the Claude-Yves Gosselin/Karim Ojjeh/Adam Sharpe Courage moved ahead of the Intersport Racing Courage that Gregor Fisken had brought in after complaining of a vibration. Liz Halliday was sent out, but the engine failed and the car has been retired. Another car out of LMP2 is the Miracle Motorsports Courage that lost a wheel when leaving the pits and was pulled out after it rolled backwards into the pitlane again.

Jorg Bergmeister found his White Lightning Racing Porsche in an unusual predicament in GT2, getting stuck "between gears". This allowed the Alex Job Racing team to stretch away, with Mike Rockenfeller taking over from Marc Lieb and pulling away as Bergmeister handed over to Patrick Long.

Pos # Drivers Make Class On Hour 10
1 3 Lehto, Werner, Kristensen Audi R8 LM P1
2 2 Biela, Pirro, McNish Audi R8 LM P1
3 5 Michigami, Ara, Kaneishi Dome Mugen LM P1
4 16 Collard, Boullion, Comas Pescarolo Judd LM P1
5 4 Montagny, Gounon, Ortelli Audi R8 LM P1
6 9 Hignett, Stack, Kurosawa Zytek 04S LM P1
7 64 Gavin, Beretta, Magnussen Corvette C6-R LM GT1
8 58 Enge, Kox, Lamy Aston Martin DBR9 LM GT1
9 63 Fellows, O'Connell, Papis Corvette C6-R LM GT1
10 7 Minassian, CampbellW., Wallace DBA Judd LM P1
11 18 Short, Barbosa, Ickx Dallara Judd LM P1
12 59 Brabham, Sarrazin, Turner Aston Martin DBR9 LM GT1
13 17 Loeb, Helary, Ayari Pescarolo Judd LM P1
14 10 Lammers, Julian, Bosch Dome Judd LM P1
15 12 Schwager, Frei, Vann Courage Judd LM P1
16 50 Goueslard, Dupard, Vosse Ferrari 550 Maranello LM GT1
17 71 Hindery, Rockenfell., Lieb Porsche 911 GT3 RSR LM GT2
18 90 Bergmeist., Long, Bernhard Porsche 911 GT3 RSR LM GT2
19 61 Fomenko, Vasiliev, Bouchut Ferrari 550 Maranello LM GT1
20 37 Belmondo, Andre, Sutherland Courage C65 Ford LM P2
21 76 Dumas, Dumez, Narac Porsche 911 GT3 RSR LM GT2
22 80 Overbeek, Pechnick, Neiman Porsche 911 GT3 RSR LM GT2
23 36 Gosselin, Ojjeh, Sharpe Courage C65 Ford LM P2
24 72 Policand, Campbell, Alphand Porsche 911 GT3 RS LM GT2
25 89 Nielsen, Thyrring, Ehret Porsche 911 GT3 RSR LM GT2
26 25 Erdos, Newton, Hughes Lola MG LM P2
27 92 Macari, Eriksson, Wilson Ferrari 360 Mo. GTC LM GT2
28 30 Bennett, Mitchell, Mullen Courage Judd LM P2
29 91 Pompidou, Blanchema., Yamagishi Porsche 911 GT3 RS LM GT2
30 35 Hillebrand, Hahn, Pickering Courage C65 Judd LM P2
31 83 Collin, Felbermayr, Shep Porsche 911 GT3 RSR LM GT2
32 31 Amorim, Iannetta, Pillon Courage - CG LM P2
33 24 Terada, Roussel, Binnie WR Peugeot LM P2
34 78 Sellers, Franchitti, Bourdais Panoz Elan LM GT2
35 95 Hartshorne, Stanton, Johnson TVR Tuscan 400 R LM GT2
36 8 Verdon Roe, Krumm, Primat Dallara Nissan LM P1
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